Sweden enter Euro 2022 as a team stacked with quality players. However, one protagonist might stand out a little.
It is attacker Fridolina Rolfö, who comes into the tournament off the back of a stellar 2021/22 season. In addition to making the highly anticipated move to Spanish giants Barcelona, she won the prestigious Diamantbollen – the award honouring the female footballer of the year in Sweden. This summer Rolfö will compete at the Euros as part of a Sweden squad with high expectations.
“I think this will be a really cool tournament with a lot of spectators in the stands,”Rolfö told 90min. “I’m excited to see all the people around the stadiums. And also, all the great teams. I think there will be exciting games and there will be a big interest about the games.”
Uefa have announced that more than 500,000 tickets have been sold for Euro 2022, which is expected to be the biggest and most competitive in the history of the women’s tournament.
“There’s so many good teams in Europe now,” Rolfö reflected. “And you see all the groups, it’s good teams in every group. It will not be easy one, I think it will be really tough.”
Aged 28 and with 65 caps to her name, Rolfö brings a lot of domestic and international experience to the Sweden squad. She knows what it’s like to compete and perform at the highest level.
“You get experience from every tournament and you know how to handle different situations,” the forward said. “And you know how physically tough it is to play a tournament with so many games. I will bring the experience I have from the different tournaments and take it with me to the Euros.
“I think we have to use our skills. We know how good we are. And for me personally, I think I have to do what I’m good at and help the team in the best way. If it’s going one against one or if it’s shooting, I will try to do [my] best to score goals and help the team.”
The Swede has predominantly played as a left sided attacker throughout her career and is renowned for her long distance efforts with her weaker left foot.
However, at her new club Barcelona, Rolfö was deployed at left back. She was nevertheless still able to combine the defensive tasks with her qualities in attack, netting nine goals in 23 domestic appearances for the Blaugrana.
How does Rolfö cope with those different positions for club and country?
“I’m pretty sure I like how my role is here [at Sweden] and how it is [at] Barcelona”, she explained. “So, I feel comfortable in both positions and it’s easy when you have teammates that are helping you out. I’m feeling safe in these positions.”
The different position at Barcelona has enabled Rolfö to add new aspects to her game.
“I feel like I’ve developed,” she reflected on her first season in Spain. “Especially the technical skills. It’s been different training for me, but it has been really a good time. [Now], I think I can bring [things] like taking fast decisions and moving the ball. [These] kind of details I can bring to the team.”
After a string of near misses in recent major tournaments – a bronze medal at the 2019 World Cup sandwiched between two Olympic silver medals – Sweden are targeting the top prize at Euro 2022.
“I have to say that our biggest goal is to win [the Euros]”, said Rolfö. “It’s a really tough goal to put up, but I know it’s possible, but we need to be lucky.
“And for me, I hope I can help the team to get there. That’s the only goal I have.”